Teenagers can ‘make a difference’

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A CHARITY is appealing for 16-year-olds to take part in a new summer scheme to help make a difference in their community.

Bosses at Catch22 in Bury St Edmunds are piloting the National Citizenship Service, which aims to bring teenagers from different backgrounds together to work in the community.

The programme, which has been introduced by the Prime Minister David Cameron and backed by actor Sir Michael Caine, will see young people take part in local and national outdoor activities and draft plans for community action during the summer holidays.

Those who complete the project will receive a nationally recognised certificate at a graduation ceremony.

Sarah Goodenough, NCS project worker for Bury, is now looking for young people, who have to be aged 16 by August 31, and adult volunteers in the Bury area including Mildenhall and Stowmarket to form a steering group to help tailor the programme to meet their needs and that of the community.

She also wants local businesses to come forward to help with service and work with the young people.

Mrs Goodenough said: “We want to empower young people to say ‘you can make a change and your voice counts’.

“We want them to feel really part of the community and empowered to make changes in their own and other people’s lives.”

Among those volunteering for the service are 46-year-old Wanda.

She said: “I will be helping the the co-ordinator to organise and encourage the young people to say ‘this is something that you can give back to society’.

Anyone who wants to take part in the service should email admin.catch22@suffolk.gov.uk or phone 07776172717.